C.Bechstein M/P 192 Polished Ebony Grand Piano
C.Bechstein M/P 192
When it comes to the short-list of the absolute top high-end pianos made anywhere in the world today, you’ll find the C. Bechstein Concert series among the elite few. Hand-made with true pride of craftsmanship at the C. Bechstein Pianofortefabrik in Seifhennersdorf Germany, the C. Bechstein grand pianos and upright pianos of today combine the sterling legacy of founder Carl Bechstein, with highly advanced modern design and engineering. Built without any reservations as to cost, Bechstein’s goal with the Concert series is to build the best piano possible, period.
The second piano of the Masterpiece Series is C. Bechstein’s transcendent 6’ acoustic piano, the A 192 Salon Grand Piano (formerly C. Bechstein MP192). This instrument has few peers to compare to; with a 15 month production time, Stradivarius spruce soundboard, exquisite finishing, and expert carpentry, the piano isn’t just an efficient sound-producing machine, but a thing of pure beauty.
Often the premium 6 foot grand when we have one in our showroom, the A 192 needs to be experienced to be believed.
Just like the other Bechstein models from the Concert series, the 192 is outfitted with what Bechstein had dubbed their ‘Gold Line Action’. Bechstein builds several different actions for the 4 lines they offer, and the ‘Gold Line Action’ is the top action they produce – built to extreme tolerances and with hundreds of hours of refinement, this is the same action you’ll find in the flagship D282 concert grand piano.
This professional action features matured hardwood materials, dark walnut hammer crowns, double-felting, super-premium felt, and of course, is voiced and regulated to a fiendish degree.
The end result is an action that plays impeccably right out of the crate with exceptional weighting, response and control, capable of literally anything even the most accomplished virtuosos will throw at it.
The tone of the C. Bechstein M/P 192 is bursting with wonderful colors, sustain, and clarity. Each note produces a vast array of well-balanced harmonics due to an excellent tension scale, and the soundboard is responsive enough to maintain the clarity of every tone even when pushed with thick chords at high volumes. The treble is strong with a beautiful singing attack with very low hammer noise, and the mid-range is lush with plenty of tonal palettes to play with. The powerful bass is warm without being overly resonant, and the perfect register transitions to the bass from the tenor is barely detectable.
C. Bechstein is known for the bridges in their concert series, which feature vertically laminated layers of premium sycamore maple, machined to tolerances down to one hundreth of a millimeter. A well executed bridge is essential for the best possible vibration characteristics of a given instrument.
The only European piano maker who still makes their own hammers, C. Bechstein is able to control this key element of the manufacturing process in-house, unlike all other European piano makers who out-source their hammer making.
Bechstein selects their top hammers for the Concert series, as the A192 is one of the only 6 foot grands on Earth to feature a hammer with a dark walnut core. The wool is sourced from New Zealand and fastened using a traditional, secret method. After installation, the hammers are voiced over countless hours by Bechstein’s top craftsmen, playing a critical role in achieving the A192’s lyrical voice.
Any discussion of the A 192 would be sorely lacking without an exposition of it’s world-renowned soundboard. One of only two 6 foot pianos on Earth to feature a soundboard of Red Spruce sourced from the legendary Val Di’ Fiemme forest in Italy, grown at elevations exceeding 1,000 meters, the A 192 easily boasts one of the highest quality soundboards of any piano. The Val Di’ Fiemme is the same forest Stradivarius sourced the wood for his mythic violins from.
And the design matches the high quality of the spruce. After precision tapering, the soundboard is fashioned to act as a membrane-like surface that reacts to even the subtlest of vibrations with any energy loss. This unique approach to soundboard design is actually appropriated from violin making.
Like other high-end piano makers, Bechstein’s focus when it comes to the structure of the instrument itself is to have the rim and frame freely resonate and actively participate in the sound production of the instrument. Bechstein is able to achieve this with 3-way joinery of selectively chosen aged woods for high stability.
Thick layers of horizontal mahogany and red beech makeup the inner rim, while the outer rim features both horizontal and vertical layers of beech. This highly specific combinations of materials, copiously layered not only provides an impregnable structure to ensure a generational lifespan for the instrument, but ensures optimized tonal projection.
Available in a variety of special finishes, the A 192 will be the crown jewel of whatever room it finds itself in.
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